Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee - New 'n' Tasty! (PlayStation 4) Review

By Az Elias 30.07.2014

Review for Oddworld: Abe

It's that time again, when everyone remembers just how old they are! 1997. That's the year the lovable, farting, bluish alien-like Abe made his debut in Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee, a game that saw him become one of the icons of the original PlayStation, alongside the likes of Crash Bandicoot and Spyro the Dragon. Abe is at last getting the long-awaited upgrade he deserves, in a full remake of his first adventure on PlayStation 4: Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee - New 'n' Tasty.

One of the most remarkable aspects of Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty is just how faithful it is to the original Abe's Oddysee. Even if the initial title hasn't been touched since the year it came out, the main menu itself - with Abe's head popping up in the middle of the screen with a heart-warming "Hello" - is enough to bring the memories flooding back. The nostalgia continues from the moment the game begins.

RuptureFarms, the meat-processing factory that has been running species extinct in the lands of Oddworld, turns its attention to the very Mudokon slaves it uses for labour. Not wanting himself and his pals to become 'Mudokon Pops,' Abe becomes an unlikely hero and attempts to escape the menacing plant with as many of his buddies as possible. It's the very same premise, and they are the very same levels, but this reimagining gives Oddworld a whole new lease of life.

Screenshot for Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee - New 'n' Tasty! on PlayStation 4

For the uninitiated, New 'n' Tasty plays out in side-scrolling fashion, as Abe jumps and dodges his way over the incredible amount of hazards that evidently show RuptureFarms hasn't had a safety inspection for years. Along the way, he needs to interact with his colleagues, as they natter away to themselves about their grim lives of scrubbing floors, and help them escape through portals that send them home and dry. A huge bump up from 99 employed Mudokons to 299 provides a livelier and more realistic environment, with many of the slaves cleaning away and waiting to be saved in secret areas that hold the most brutal of traps and puzzles.

Abe controls mostly the same way as he did in Abe's Oddysee, but there are certain alterations to the button setup, and some differences that require a brief learning period. Perhaps most crucially disappointing is that movement is forced to the left analogue stick - a rule that doesn't go down well in 2D side-scrollers. Gamespeak commands are aligned to the directions of the D-pad, but there surely had to have been an option there to switch this around. New 'n' Tasty is all about precise platforming and quick reactions, and the reassuring accuracy that's guaranteed through D-pad movement is sorely missed, where the analogue stick can be prone to causing mistakes.

Screenshot for Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee - New 'n' Tasty! on PlayStation 4

In general, the learning curve isn't as steep for people that haven't played either of Abe's PlayStation games for many years, but those accustomed to the original setups may need a little more adjustment time. Once nailed down and the stick movement gotten used to, New 'n' Tasty is the challenging, pin-point accurate platformer it was renowned for being back in the day - provided the hardest difficulty is selected for the cruel classic one-hit death experience, naturally.

RuptureFarms is still mostly as dark and evil as remembered, the new graphics engine and camera angles that shift as Abe moves throughout the game emphasising the grandiose factory's inner workings and sheer amount of attention to detail to give this corrupt facility its sinister atmosphere. There is the case it isn't completely as intimidating, however, and changes made to certain enemies mean a little of the scare-factor has been lost. Outdoors, there are some lovely areas with vast backdrops that stretch way back to deliver a new level of realism and character as Abe ventures through Paramonia and Scrabania, but there are apparent graphical hiccoughs and bugs that sadly mar the experience somewhat.

Screenshot for Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee - New 'n' Tasty! on PlayStation 4

These bugs run over into gameplay and what seem like control issues. Whilst acknowledged by Oddworld Inhabitants and aiming to be addressed in patches ASAP, it is bizarre just how many problems have gone unnoticed. Some cause crashes and force restarts of chapters, some cause Abe to die when he shouldn't, some produce audio faults, and others create amusing glitches, such as platforms rendering invisible and enemies getting stuck in place. It's difficult to tell whether Abe not doing what he is asked when it comes to combining rolling, running and jumping in quick succession during chase sequences to escape enemies is part of further bugs, or just the way control registration is implemented along with the inaccuracy of stick movement, but it sure feels like the former at times.

The technical faults can be overlooked for the most part because, whilst some do cause deaths, this isn't as big an issue due to the constant death-respawn nature of the game anyway, and the new save state function also works in its favour dramatically to bypass certain problems. Once Oddworld Inhabitants gets these and the big game-breaking bugs fixed permanently, however, New 'n' Tasty can be fully enjoyed solely for the game it is: a punishing platformer that is every bit as rewarding as the original, and one that begs to be replayed over and over until every last Mudokon has been saved for good.

Screenshot for Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee - New 'n' Tasty! on PlayStation 4

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

When such an iconic PlayStation game is remade into something so visually impressive, it's a wonder that more 32-bit classics haven't had the same treatment. The dark and expressive RuptureFarms is recaptured in stunning fashion in Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee - New 'n' Tasty, and the precise platforming trials will give even the most seasoned gamer a tough time. Minus the bugs that are hoped to be patched up in due course, there is no denying the amount of effort put into giving Abe's Oddysee - one of the most memorable and addictive platformers of the late 90s - a solid present day makeover. Compared to the prices being asked for so many rehashes and mediocre titles today, £17.99 is nothing, so support New 'n' Tasty and Oddworld Inhabitants, and show them that Abe's Exoddus must be next on the remake list!


Just Add Water


Oddworld Inhabitants


2D Platformer



C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10 (2 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   


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